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Secret Apartment at Providence Place

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Here's a wacky story. An artists' cooperative built a secret 750-square-foot apartment at Providence Place Mall and lived there on and off for four years.

The apartment included a sectional sofa and love seat, coffee and breakfast tables, chairs, lamps, rugs, paintings, a hutch filled with china, a waffle iron, TV and Sony Playstation 2 -- although a burglar broke in and stole the Playstation last spring, Townsend said. It did not include running water, however, as the inhabitants simply used the mall bathrooms.

The artist got probation for building the apartment.

There's a Web site with a video about the project.

Here's an excerpt of what the artist had to say about the apartment.

Starting in 2003 I committed to the idea of creating a luxury apartment in the mall. Over the course of the years to come I systematically coordinated the movement of the core elements that start to define a home. The space in the mall achieved a base-level of comfort, with enough amenities to qualify itself as a livable domestic space. Life from within the mall was committed to the pursuit of normalcy and the purchase of objects and clothing that would help define me an active participant in the great things the mall has to offer. The apartment was a superb space for hosting guests and I only regret that we didn't have a working toilet.

Update: The wife of artist that started the apartment also has a site about the venture.

Spotted at Boing Boing.

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Elaine Misonzhnik

Senior associate editor Elaine Misonzhnik has been writing for National Real Estate Investor since June 2006 and has covered commercial real estate for more than 12 years. She first became...
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